5 Things Red Sox Fans Are Thankful For
But just 365 days ago, most Red Sox fans were still mumbling under their breath after one of the worst years in recent franchise history—having finished in last place in the American League.
If you ask the giddy Bostonians walking around Faneuil Hall who Bobby Valentine is this weekend, they might feign amnesia.
Oh, but what a difference a year makes.
But before the duck boats appear and before the bandwagon celebrities show up for the parade, let's count down the things Red Sox Nation have to be thankful for...
5. The New Guys
The new guys.
Guys like Shane Victorino always seemed to be having more fun than anyone else out there (can someone please explain "#Shanf" to me?).
And guys like Mike Napoli, who used to kill the Red Sox when he was with the Angels. But the veteran first baseman and designated hitter shows up here, not bitter about the weird contract situation. Just a guy ready to prove himself.
And boy did he. Then there's Stephen Drew, Jake Peavy, Mike Carp...
I won't run through all of the rest of the new guys, but shout out to the precocious rookie third baseman Xander Bogaerts and the old man behind the dish David Ross, who said he didn't even know how old he looked until he grew out his beard.
Hell, half the team is new. But everyone of those guys fit like a glove.
4. This Guy
His name is Steve Horgan. He's a Boston police officer. And he's a Red Sox fan.
Unlike those poor guys who have to work sporting events and face the other way, Officer Horgan gets to watch the game, and even though he's on duty, he can't hide the fact that he's a freaking longtime fan.
Even though Officer Horgan got a chance to raise those famous arms in the World Series clincher, he became a cult hero because of this pic.
And he might just have been the lucky charm. No offense to the last lucky charm the Sox had.
3. John Farrell
I'll get it out of the way right now. I have questioned some of manager John Farrell's postseason moves loudly on Twitter.
Which is why he'll probably never have to buy a beer anywhere near Fenway.
Or New England for that matter.
2. The Honest to Goodness Actual Fans
Red Sox fans remember the lean years. They remember the close seasons and the heartbreaks. And they remember the Bobby Valentine year. But they came back this year optimistic as ever when there were a bunch of question marks.
And when the team found something to rally around, they came along with it. Hell, if it had been Afros, you would've thought you were coming to an old-school Jackson 5 convention every game.
Tip your cap to yourselves, Sox fans. You've earned it.
(Besides we are outnumbered by the Red Sox haters—trust me.)
1. Mr. Ortiz
What more can we say about Big Papi? He is the only Red Sox player to star in all three recent championship teams. The first one was 10 years ago. He's just as good now as he was then.
One of the most clutch hitters in the history of postseason baseball? No one can argue that.
The best designated hitter in history? Most will agree.
A guy you want to grab a beer with? No doubt.
World Series MVP? Got that, too.
All Red Sox fans can hope is that he's done enough to get that call to the Hall of Fame one day.
Until then, we'll just keep cheering for our Big Papi.